The second time around is presenting Luis Nunez with new challenges.
Nunez is about to begin his second year as head coach of the Ocean View High football program. His initial team won four games in 2012 and tied for third place in the Golden West League. Gone from that unit are several key players but Nunez has a few returning weapons that could bolster a squad that he says is "thin at all positions."
"This year's team has more talent than last year but it is lacking the intangibles that last year's team had," said Nunez who also coaches the offensive line. "Sometimes the little things in the weight room, classroom and practice make a bigger difference than talent."
The Ocean View varsity roster in 2013 could include up to 35 players, he said. The quarterback position is up in the air during preseason camp, which began Monday. Vying for that starting spot is junior Jett Volo and sophomore Blake Meyer. Volo started and Meyer played as backup at quarterback on Ocean View's frosh/soph team that last year went 9-1.
While the QB spot is still TBD, the Seahawks do return a key player in the offensive backfield in Daniel Valencia, which will help offset the loss to graduation of last year's top rusher and second-team All-Golden West League pick, Nate Kwon. As a junior last year, Valencia rushed for 478 yards and three touchdowns on 84 carries. Nunez calls the senior-to-be a "key for us on offense."
Junior Kevin Tierney will add a new element to the running back position in his first year on varsity. Last year, Tierney was named MVP of the frosh/soph team.
Up front providing pass and blocking protection are two all-league returnees, 6-foot-6 senior tackle Evan Perzanowski and senior guard Joe Medrano. Nunez said Perzanowski, the leader of the offensive line, drew the attention of Pac-12 Conference schools as well as other Division 1 schools during the spring.
Nunez said the offensive line has the potential to be "special."
A trio of juniors, Tyler Clay, Hector Calderon and David Alani, started on varsity as sophomores last year and are "expected to do big things this year," Nunez said. All three will see action on both sides of the ball.
The Seahawks must find replacements for graduated, all-league players Alani Speiser (tight end/defensive back, team captain), Reo Washington (receiver/defensive back), Rey Soria (fullback/defensive end, team captain) and Christian Negrete (kicker).
"Tons of guys going both ways still, as we just don't have the numbers or depth to have one-way starters," Nunez said. "Defensively, I expect us to be solid as David Alani will anchor the line up front. [Our] linebackers are young but solid and the secondary will be led by Tyler Clay who is our best cover guy."
Ocean View starts its season Sept. 6 with a nonleague game against neighboring Marina. The Vikings are the only new addition to this year's nonleague schedule.
"Kids are excited for Week 1 as many of the kids went to middle school together and it's a chance to get the city excited for an inner-city game," Nunez said.
Ocean View Seahawks
League: Golden West
Head coach: Luis Nunez (second year)
Coaching staff: Daniel Hernandez (offensive coordinator/running backs); Chris Estrada (defensive coordinator/linebackers); Javier Rodriguez (wide receivers/outside linebackers); Jodie Perkins (quarterbacks/defensive backs); Lee Afusia (defensive line); Sean Wilson (defensive line); Peter Kim (linebackers).
2012 records: 4-6 overall; 2-3 league (tie third)
Offensive scheme: Multiple sets
Defensive scheme: 4-4
Returning starters offense: 6
Returning starters defense: 6
Players returning with honors: Evan Perzanowski (OT, first team all-league, Sr.); Joe Medrano (OG, second team all-league, Sr.).
Key returning players: Daniel Valencia (RB/MLB, Sr.); Evan Perzanowski (OT, Sr.); Joe Medrano (OG, Sr.); Tyler Clay (WRKR/PR, Jr.); David Alani (TE/DT, Jr.); Hector Calderon (WR/K/P, Jr.).
Key newcomers: Blake Meyer (QB, Soph.); Jett Volo (QB, Jr.); Jordan Stout (WR/DB, Sr.); Alex Aldanese (WR, Sr.); Kevin Tierney (RB/DB, Jr.); Kevin Martinez (DB, Jr.); Mark Olds (OL/DL, Jr.).
Team strengths: "Running game, overall team strength," Nunez said.
2013 Seahawks Schedule
Sept. 6: vs. Marina, 7 p.m.
Sept. 12: at Estancia, 7 p.m.
Sept. 20: at Cerritos (Gahr High), 7 p.m.
Sept. 27: at Bolsa Grande, 7 p.m.
Oct. 4: vs. Los Amigos, 7 p.m.
Oct. 11: vs. *Loara, 7 p.m.
Oct. 17: vs. *Santa Ana, 7 p.m.
Oct. 25: at *Segerstrom, 7 p.m.
Nov. 1: at *Westminster, 7 p.m.
Nov. 8: vs. *Orange, 7 p.m.
(*denotes league game)Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun